Show Summary Details

Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD HANDBOOKS ONLINE ( © Oxford University Press, 2018. All Rights Reserved. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a title in Oxford Handbooks Online for personal use (for details see Privacy Policy and Legal Notice).

date: 20 October 2021

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter examines the debate about multiculturalism in political theory. It traces the emergence of a philosophical literature to justify policies enacted by contemporary liberal democratic states that seek to fairly accommodate cultural diversity and remedy racial injustice. It traces the origins of the contemporary philosophical debate about multiculturalism (particularly in the United States and Canada) to the communitarian critique of theories of liberal neutrality that emphasized individual freedom and autonomy at the expense of collective membership. The liberal–communitarian debate culminated in liberal defenses of minority group rights that emphasize the centrality of culture and group membership to individual autonomy. The essay goes on to consider three remaining sources of tension in liberal multiculturalism: the question of how to reconcile commitments to gender equality and multiculturalism, the issue of how to deal with illiberal minority cultures (particularly religious groups), and the failure to adequately conceive racial justice.

Keywords: liberalism, multiculturalism, culture, race, justice

Access to the complete content on Oxford Handbooks Online requires a subscription or purchase. Public users are able to search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter without a subscription.

Please subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you have purchased a print title that contains an access token, please see the token for information about how to register your code.

For questions on access or troubleshooting, please check our FAQs, and if you can''t find the answer there, please contact us.